At long last I can reveal this gorgeous cover for the upcoming fourth book in my House of Pleasure series
Only Seduction Will Do
This next book in the series, set in Georgian England, is the story of Jack Fitzwilliam, the Earl of Manning and Miss Alethea Forsythe. We met Jack in book one, Only Scandal Will Do, his sister Katarina Fitzwilliam’s story. Alethea we have heard of in every book, but are only just meeting her now, as she tells her own story.
Here’s the blurb:
In a vulnerable moment, Alethea Forsythe allows herself to be seduced by a married peer. Now she is with child—and without recourse. Her reputation will soon be in tatters and she will be forced to wed a stranger—unless she takes matters into her own hands.
When Jack Fitzwilliam, the Earl of Manning, is summoned from the House of Pleasure on a matter of importance, he hardly expects to receive a marriage proposal. He’s long been aware of Alethea’s infatuation with him, but at twenty-three, taking on an expectant bride is not in his plans. Yet the desperation in the lady’s lovely eyes overrides his misgivings.
Alethea would not have believed it possible for a man to be too chivalrous. But though her new husband is perfectly amicable in public, he insists they maintain separate quarters. Desperate to possess his heart and prove herself a wife in every way, she boldly reaches out to Jack. And as their unexpected connection between silken sheets is tested by jealousy and misfortune, Jack must decide where honor ends…and true passion begins . .
If you’d like to visit my Pinterest board for Only Seduction Will Do, the link is here.
And here is an exclusive excerpt from Only Seduction Will Do:
“Well, my lord?” She stood in the center of the gazebo, her frank blue eyes holding a touch of impatience.
“Miss Forsythe, I…I—” Damnation. He really should do this properly.
“Lord Manning, you seem not to be able to summon language past the personal pronoun.” The frown darkening her brow showed her impatience with his antics. “What matter has brought you to speak to me?”
“Just this.” Dropping to one knee, Jack grasped her gloved hand.
Immediately, she attempted to pull it away, but he gripped her fingers tightly, fixing her before him. He gazed up unto a thunderous face, outrage warring with hurt.
“I have come to ask you to be my wife, Miss Forsythe.”
Tears started from her eyes and she pulled back so violently she almost dragged him to the floor.
He managed to hang on to her hand, though he feared the force would break her delicate bones.
“Stop it. Just stop this idiocy, my lord.” Trying to shake him off had thrown her off balance. She stumbled back and sat hard in one of the wicker chairs. It creaked with the blow. Tears dripped down her cheeks. “Why are you doing this? I didn’t think you a man who would taunt a woman, misuse her so ill, just because she had shown you her desperation.”
Christ. Of course she’d be suspicious of his motives. After he’d pronounced himself betrothed not twelve hours ago she had every right to be. “I beg your pardon, Miss Forsythe. I have begun this badly.” He fished in his pocket, drew out a handkerchief, and handed it to her.
After wiping her streaming face she took a deep breath. “Thank you.”
“N’tall. Please allow me to begin again.” Jack drew a deep breath of his own and plunged on. “Miss Forsythe, after due consideration of the honor of your request of me last evening…um, this morning, I have altered my obligations to the impediment in my life that made me unable to accept your proposal. I am now unencumbered and fully willing to accept you if you are still willing to become my wife.”
Miss Forsythe grew pale and still, her hand cold despite her gloves. “But you said you were betrothed, my lord.”
“And so I was, this morning. I have since broken with the lady, to our mutual satisfaction.”
“Believe me, Miss Forsythe, the lady will not suffer in any way from this parting. Indeed, she seemed quite relieved to be rid of me.” He chuckled at the memory of Miss Carlton’s vehement insistence that Lord Trevor allow the betrothal to be broken.
“But how could anyone wish for you to jilt them, my lord?” The horror and disbelief in her eyes told its own tale. This was why she had come to him with her proposal.
“I believe the lady’s true affections lay elsewhere. In any event, she has released me from my promise to her and made it possible for me to offer you the protection of my name. Unless someone else has come forward to champion you?”
“No.” The denial came out a croak. She cleared her throat and the hand he still claimed loosened its grip. “No one else has been contacted to my knowledge.”
Damn Braeton. Well, when she found out about the other offers, it would be too late. Not that he believed she would have accepted any of that lot.
She stared at him with eyes the color of a bleak day. “I will say, however, that my cousin does not always inform me of what he does on my behalf. There could be an army of suitors awaiting my return this instant.”
“Then shall I steal a march on these phantom suitors, Miss Forsythe? I do have the prior claim.” He turned on her a smile as engaging and boyish as he could make it.
“May I ask a question first, my lord?”
Intent on her face, he nodded.
“Why break with the other lady when you owe me no loyalty at all?” Her eyes searched his face, seeking honesty, perhaps.
Or, it suddenly dawned on him, a hint of affection?
The pieces of Miss Forsythe’s puzzling behavior fell into place with a suddenness that made his heart skip a beat. Miss Forsythe had developed a tendre for him.
Only Seduction Will Do will release on June 5, 2018 and is currently available for pre-order at these e-tailers:
To celebrate the cover reveal, I’m giving away copies of Only A Mistress Will Do to three random blog readers who comment on this post that they’d like a copy.
Titles in The House of Pleasure series
(Click on the cover for the Amazon link)